Corruption is a complex social, political and economic phenomenon that affects all countries. Corruption undermines democratic institutions, slows economic development and contributes to governmental instability. Corruption attacks the foundation of democratic institutions by distorting electoral processes, perverting the rule of law and creating bureaucratic quagmires whose only reason for existing is the soliciting of bribes. Economic development is stunted because foreign direct investment is discouraged and small businesses within the country often find it impossible to overcome the "start-up costs" required because of corruption.
On 31 October 2003, the General Assembly adopted the United Nations Convention against Corruption and requested that the Secretary-General designate the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) as secretariat for the Convention’s Conference of States Parties (resolution 58/4).
The Assembly also designated 9 December as International Anti-Corruption Day, to raise awareness of corruption and of the role of the Convention in combating and preventing it. The Convention entered into force in December 2005.
Government institutions, non-governmental organisations, the private sector and concerned citizens are joining UNODC in promoting the campaign slogan "Corruption. Your NO Counts". Each 'no' to corruption counts and makes a difference in fighting this crime.The South African anti-corruption and fraud hotline number is 0800 701 701.
Other anti-corruption hotlines in government are:
- Human Settlements: 0800 204401
- Government Employees Pension Fund: 0800 43 43 73
- Traffic: 0861 400 800 (not toll free)
- South African Revenue Service: 0800 00 28 70
- South African Social Security Agency (SASSA): 0800601011